“Disrespecting the flag; there has to be more to the hate.”
It has been nearly six months since the end of the 2016 NFL season and quarterback Colin Kaepernick is still without a job. For those who are unaware of Colin Kaepernick, he is an NFL quarterback who last played for the San Francisco 49ers. Colin received adulation from many as he aided in rallying his team to the NFL Super Bowl back in 2013. Although they lost against the Baltimore Ravens 34 – 31, Kaepernick saw himself becoming a prospect among top NFL quarterbacks. But last season in 2016, Kaepernick refused to stand for the national anthem sighting he was protesting police brutality against minorities. He stated he could not stand and pledge to a flag, which represented freedom while innocent Black men were being killed by cops.
It immediately sent people into a rage. He was receiving everything from hate mail from fans to sportscasters attacking him. But my question is, “Are people really this patriotic?” Because as I walk the streets on a daily basis, I see plenty of opportunities to be patriotic, but people don’t. You walk through the mall and see military recruitment offices. With how patriotic people are being, you would think that recruitment offices are packed. They are not, as a matter of fact, they are having a hard time recruiting in military. Why in a nation where a president just said we need a stronger military is there limited military enrollment. Because no one want to risk their child going into battle over something they may not agree with.
So why not just be honest about how we really feel. Memorial Day was yesterday and we all had flags flying. Gave discounts on food at restaurants, and some people even shook the hands of troops. But on a daily we don’t live that way. So once again, where does the real sentiment over Colin Kaepernick come from in America? I’m sure there is a demographic of people who take issue with Kaepernick, but what is the real reason? To me, I have two positions on why people take issue with Colin. The first is a racial aspect and the other financial.
The reason I say racial is because outspoken Black males have been an issue with a lot of people throughout history. Jim Brown was criticized in the past and now Kaepernick. And it not only is in sports, it extends itself to all sorts of American life. I wonder would the same outcry of emotion come when it’s a popular White player. I have a theory and my theory is such. I feel people want to say, “You shouldn’t even be in your position.” “Be lucky you’re there because if not for sports you probably wouldn’t be doing nothing with your lives.” “I’m sick of Black people talking, shut up do what I say, and leave it at that.” Patriotism is real, but it’s not this real in America. How about another reason to be angry?
That other reason could be financial in America. We are living in society where so many people are stressed from not having their money right. Now this millionaire athlete they feel is complaining, so they are fighting back. I come from the Midwest, and plenty of people are barely surviving. So they are bringing their own financial woes into the equation. To them, they don’t know one moment to the next if they will survive or not, so they need a reason to be upset. A lot of people angry don’t watch football, or don’t even watch the team that Colin plays for in the NFL. So it’s just another aspect of America that gives people the reason to be angry.
In the end, people may have a legitimate reason for not liking what he did, but the level of disdain is not real. It’s not real because we are not this patriotic on this level in our daily society. If it were reflective in our daily lives I wouldn’t mind. But we are also very selective in our fights. We are for what people believe as long as it is for something we like in life. Good is good if it’s good for me. But at this point, I don’t see Colin on a team anytime soon. For now he is in limbo and only time will tell.